Opinion & Analysis

Daily news

Dissident teachers make it to high court

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to decide the constitutionality of compulsory union dues being challenged by 10 California public school teachers. The teachers have $1,200 a year deducted from their paychecks to pay the association not only for its union representation, but also for union political activity to which the plaintiffs object.

Read more

Schools must raise focus on kids’ vision

We should be testing the bottom 25 percent of each class by a vision specialist who does two exams — not just at 20 feet but also for reading difficulties at 16 inches. The cost would be compared to money saved in teaching and the sequence for poor readers of remedial reading, dropping out, committing petty crime, going to prison and recidivism.

Read more

State court rules block grants are unconstitutional

The Kansas Legislature is again in a dilemma over school funding. Cutting education funding so a select few can benefit from income tax decreases is not fair to the Kansas students and will ultimately hurt the state's economy in the long term through a less-prepared workforce.

Read more

Big results in the Big Easy

Given the depths from which New Orleans' schools started their journey, much more needs to be done. Offering school-level autonomy to all schools, engaging community leaders to help solve the problem and funding the interventions are three lessons that the city has already learned.

Read more

A sick ‘fix’ for failed schools — fake the test scores

Back in 2011, the state of New York banned re-scoring tests, except if there’s a compelling reason — which doesn’t include trying to make a school look better than it is. It does students no favors to have their scores show they passed when they haven’t truly mastered the material.

Read more

Pennsylvania needs to push fair school funding

Both sides are praising the school funding formula as a necessary step toward better school finances, but the timing has now become a negotiating point threatening to slow or derail action. Some legislative leaders want to put it into place immediately and let the formula determine how state funding rolls out in whatever current budget gets adopted.

Read more

Era of overspending must end at Chicago Public Schools

CPS has run up annual operating deficits of about $500 million since fiscal 2011. The deficit is projected to soar to $737 million in the fiscal year that ends June 30 on a budget of $5.83 billion.

Read more

If da Vinci designed our schools

If we conjured up Leonardo da Vinci and asked him to critique our public school system, he would be appalled by the way our high schools segregate students according to the “academic” and the “vocational.”

Read more

Where girls are missing out on high-school sports

Nearly 4,500 public high-schools across the United States have large gender inequality in sports and could be in violation of Title IX.

Read more

The Confederacy's legacy: Should any of it stand?

What should we do about streets, schools and public buildings named after Confederates? It is important to eliminate hurtful images that glorify or legitimize the Confederacy's disgraceful values. But to what extent should we preserve symbols of the Confederacy for their educational value as reminders of that dark period in our nation's past?

Read more

Pages